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VENTURI, Giorgio. A note on the introduction of Hilbert’s Grundlagen der Geometrie. Manuscrito [online]. 2017, vol.40, n.2, pp.5-17. ISSN 0100-6045.

We present and discuss a change in the introduction of Hilbert’s Grundlagen der Geometrie between the first and the subsequent editions: the disappearance of the reference to the independence of the axioms.

We briefly outline the theoretical relevance of the notion of independence in Hilbert’s work and we suggest that a possible reason for this disappearance is the discovery that Hilbert’s axioms were not, in fact, independent. In the end we show how this change gives textual evidence for the connection between the notions of independence and simplicity.

Keywords : Hilbert; geometry; independence; simplicity; Grundlagen der Geometrie.

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